Free software could help IT departments

School and college IT departments have until the end of the calendar year to take advantage of a new offer from automated systems management software provider Kaseya, which is providing its IT inventory software to educational institutions free of charge for a limited time.

"The federal stimulus plan included funds for technology improvements at schools…, such as new computers and software, which will require dedicated time and resources to manage effectively," said Jim Alves, executive vice president for strategy and product marketing at Kaseya.

But school IT staff often are overworked already, Alves pointed out, with budget cuts forcing staff to do more with fewer personnel and resources. Kaseya’s free offer will help school and college IT personnel manage technology more efficiently, he added.

Kaseya’s software manages servers and workstations through a single web-based interface. The discovery and inventory program, which will track up to 1,000 machines, provides quick access to computer inventory information, scans for all IP-enabled devices, and reports the details required to manage a school’s network from anywhere.
IT staff using the software will have access to details about their organization’s workstations, laptops, and servers, which can help them make the most of the technology already in their schools during a time of tight budgets.

Kaseya’s software helps find misplaced computers, printers, and routers, and it gathers and analyzes software, hardware, and operating system data from each device on the network. The program also tracks all software applications, license keys, and duplicate licenses. Automated inventory scans help IT administrators understand exactly what assets they have, without having to gather the data manually–thereby freeing up their time to focus on more strategic tasks.
Alves said Kaseya was searching for a way to help schools and colleges take inventory of the technology they already have in anticipation of incoming federal stimulus dollars.

More money means more possibility for technology investment, and Alves said schools can’t more forward until they know what technology they already have.

The solution "helps schools see what technology they have, find their devices, see how they’re configured, find software licenses, and keep things up to date," he said. "That way, if they know what they have, they can manage it easily and provide better support."

President Obama has highlighted the need to spend stimulus money wisely, and "you can really do that when you know what you have or don’t have–it will really help you to spend and manage wisely," Alves said.

To take advantage of the free offer, schools should visit Kaseya’s web site and follow the instructions from there. The offer runs until Dec. 31, and schools that sign up during that period will continue to receive the service free of charge after enrolling.

Both K-12 and higher-education institutions are welcome to participate, but the offer might not make sense for large schools systems and universities, because the software only tracks up to 1,000 networked devices.

Kaseya will provide license keys for its software, as well as on-demand training videos that are downloadable online.

"Using technology is one thing, but keeping it running and available is another," Alves said.

Kaseya IT stimulus program

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